A convector heater is a radiator used to heat large open areas. Unlike conventional radiators, convectors use air circulation to distribute warmth farther than just the bare walls they are in contact with.

Why are they so popular among designers?

Convector heaters are referred to as "trunk" or "open loop" heaters. This is because they have no return air duct. The convectors work on the principle of heat transfer. Convector heaters can be very efficient, providing fairly consistent heat throughout the area.

Architects and interior designers spend hours considering how every little detail will affect the overall look of a room. Everything must be calculated carefully, from lighting to the choice of color and texture of materials, to create a comfortable and aesthetic environment. The same is true in industrial settings as well.

Convector heaters create an aesthetically pleasing space that also provides modern heating comfort.

The ideal environment for a convector heater is a space that features a large window, a lot of open space, and a minimum of obstructions. The customizability of convection heaters has provided a wide range of options, from primary and low-cost heaters to more complex, high-end models.

Built-in thermostats that can control individual units or silicon-controlled rectifiers that allow for remote control are ordinary among convector heaters. Depending on the temperature of the space, it is essential to ensure the unit has adequate thermal capacity and insulation to prevent overheating.

Trusted manufacturers

Brands differ from country to country. Manufacturers Broan, De'Longhi, and Stiebel Eltron are widespread in the US and Canada, while Stiebel Eltron and BLACK-DECKER are prevalent in the UK and Europe.

  • Stiebel Eltron is a German company that is well-known for producing the highest quality convector heaters in the world. The company has a long history of success and innovation and has been making great products for an extended period. Read our Buyer’s Guide Best wall-mounted electric heaters in the UK in 2022, where we’ve compared all trusted convectors on the UK market.
  • De'Longhi is an Italian company focusing on convector heaters for industrial, commercial, residential, and agricultural spaces. They are known for their high-quality products and stylish designs. Read Best Wall Heaters in the US market Compared
  • Smith's is a British company that focuses on central heating plinth heaters. Their design enhances the performance and quality of their products. The company has a long history of innovation, with many patents proving its originality and success.

Portable convectors on wheels made by BLACK-DECKER as well as their oscillating ceramic tower heaters are mainly popular in the UK. In North America and Canada, De'Longhi convectors are prevalent.

How Does a Convector Heater Work? Technology & Construction

The principle of convection is the transfer of heat utilizing the room. Cool air remains on the floor as hot air rises because cold air is much denser than the hot air leaving the convector. 

All convector heaters contain two components that work together to ensure efficiency and safety. The element and the over-temperature limit are the two components that make a convector heater work. The over-temperature limit is a safety device that limits electricity to the unit if it gets too hot.

The element is the central part of a convector that does the work of heating. It can either be an electric element or a radiant tube in combination with an advanced electronic control board. The element component turns off in some units based on the temperature setting. When the temperature is correct, the element turns on.

Fins are added to the element to create a chimney-like system. Airflow is the crucial factor determining a convector's heat transfer. The fins allow air to flow through the component and disperse the heat evenly in all directions. Most convectors have aluminum fins that have been pressure bonded to the component.

When an air inlet is obstructed by furniture, causing heat to build, the temperature limiter will limit the flow of electricity to the element. In this case, the element will not get over hot and cause damage to the unit. However, more secure convectors like the bomb-proof convectors have steel fins brazed to the rod to provide more excellent protection.

The heat flow rates usually measure the convection factor. The heat flow rates indicate how fast heat is transferred into the room. To achieve efficient heat transfer, the convector heater element must have a high convection factor. Although convection heaters are very efficient, they can be dangerous if not installed correctly. If a component or part of the unit does not meet the proper standards, it could cause a fire.

Convectors come in a wide variety of sizes and styles. They are typically placed at the floor level, on walls, or under windows. Control options include manual operation and more sophisticated programming via easy-to-use Web interfaces. 

Heating units need to blend in with the rest of the factory, office, or warehouse to help make the space inviting. In addition to aesthetics, a heating unit must also fulfill the heating requirements with little to no hassle. 

Alternatives to convector heaters


All factors considered, there is no single size that fits all. Convector heaters can be found in various sizes and styles depending on the space in which they are to be installed. Large commercial warehouses, factories, and other industrial facilities require large convector heaters.

Convector heaters accommodate users who require a high level of heating control and can be programmed to only come on or off when needed. For this reason, engineers, architects, and interior designers сan customize their units to fit the space.

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